Taliban tell NWFP govt to address their reservations or face consequences

June 21st, 2008 - 12:07 pm ICT by ANI  

Peshawar, June 21 (ANI): After a few weeks of signing a peace deal with the pro-Taliban elders in tribal areas bordering Afghanistan, the NWFP government is learnt to have resumed talks with the extremists, assuring them that all their issues and reservations (against the government) would be addressed.

During the talks, the Taliban complained that their colleagues were still imprisoned and the Pakistan Army was still occupying the area, and also said that their reservations should be addressed by June 23 or there could be consequences, the Daily Times quoted sources as saying.

The Taliban leaders reportedly conveyed this to provincial Forests Minister Wajid Ali Khan when he secretly met them in Mingora last evening.

Khan met several Taliban leaders, including Ali Bakht, Haji Muslim Khan, Maulana Amin, Mahmood Khan and Nisar Khan in the Deouli area of Swat and asked them to continue peace talks.

He requested the Taliban to continue negotiations so that all issues could be settled through dialogue and assured the Taliban that he would convey their reservations to the provincial government.

The local Taliban had ended contact with the government on June 17 to protest at the governments delay in releasing 50 Taliban prisoners.

Bashir Bilour, a senior minister in the NWFP government, said that the provincial government would honour the peace agreement with the Taliban in letter and spirit to ensure stability and prosperity. Clause IV of the peace deal says prisoners would be released after reviewing cases against them. Under the deal, the NWFP government has conceded to a gradual withdrawal of all security forces from the Swat district. (ANI)

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